Resident's sketch helps persuade UDOT to reconsider option C-1

Feb 22 2011 - 12:10am

Images

ANTHONY SOUFFLE/Standard-Examiner
The sun’s last rays of the day light up the Park Lane overpass on Thursday in North Davis County near Farmington.
ANTHONY SOUFFLE/Standard-Examiner
The sun’s last rays of the day light up the Park Lane overpass on Thursday in North Davis County near Farmington.

FARMINGTON -- Farmington city has a preference for the West Davis Corridor, but the preferred alignment might have never seen the light of day if not for one determined city resident.

After previously favoring an option that would have traversed the extreme western portion of the city, Farmington city officials now prefer what the Utah Department of Transportation calls the C-1 alternative, a route that closely parallels Interstate 15 between Park Lane and Shepard Lane.

The city has favored the C-1 option all along, but a preliminary analysis in previous planning studies deemed the option impractical, although the route in its current formation has always been on the current West Davis Corridor Study.

In 2009, the city modified its master transportation plan to accommodate the western option, based on the fact that the C-1 option wouldn't even be considered.

That's when Farmington resident Matt Gore stepped in.

Gore, 37, has been a civil designer since 1995 and used his background to come up with an altered version of the route that he thought could work.

"A lot of people felt like this (C-1) option was the best way to go," Gore said. "But nobody could get it to work. I just tried to come up with something that would force people to take a closer look."

UDOT first killed the C-1 option when it was thought that a bridge would have to be built over the Park Lane overpass. Gore's idea came when he realized the West Davis Corridor could traverse underneath it.

"I thought it might be able to go underneath (Park Lane)," he said. "So I grabbed the federal highway design book, looked at some of UDOT's standards and came up with a drawing and submitted it."

Gore's idea quickly garnered some attention from UDOT.

"Their engineers looked at it and thought it had some legs," Gore said.

While not the exact same as Gore's, UDOT developed an alternate route based on his prototype.

"We had some more time to look at it in depth, and we did receive that information from (Gore) and that helped us," WDC Project Manager Randy Jeffries said. "We have taken and will continue to take input from residents, and we welcome it. We've had a lot of valuable ideas (from residents)."

While not held to the same federal standards as UDOT, Gore said his version of the route would affect only one home.

Farmington Mayor Scott Harbertson and City Manager Dave Millheim said the city prefers the C-1 alternative because it keeps the north/south traffic in a consolidated area parallel to I-15 and will have the least impact when it comes to wetlands, relocation of existing homes, noise generation and area businesses.

"It was a big deal," Millheim said of Gore's drawings. "It sparked a whole new idea."

Currently, no funding source has been identified for construction of the road, but UDOT expects to make its final record of decision on the corridor in 2013.

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